Should I be Filing for a Gluten-Free Food Tax Deduction?

gluten free tax deduction

It’s no surprise that those of us who eat gluten free spend more on groceries than non-gluten free eaters. Have you ever compared prices? It’s crazy how a gluten free loaf of bread is double the price and half the size!

Deducting gluten free food from taxes is something I’ve heard about for a while, but recently looked in to.  Personally, I’m not sure if it’s worth the amount of work it takes. But, I want you to be the judge of that for your life so here is a brief overview of the guidelines for filing for a gluten free food tax deduction.

You need an official diagnosis from your physician:

Many people eat gluten free for various reasons, but only those with an official diagnosis with a gluten- related disorder will qualify. You will also need your doctor to write you a prescription stating a gluten free diet is your treatment option.

Expenses must exceed 10% of your Adjusted Gross Income:

You will qualify for a refund only if your medical expenses (including gluten free food) are more than 10% of your AGI. This might seem confusing, so click here to learn more about this.

Keep track of your gluten free food purchases for the whole year:

When it’s time to efile your taxes for the year, keep in mind that you can deduct the amount you are spending on gluten free food that is in EXCESS of the cost of the gluten containing food that you are replacing. This means you’ll have to calculate the difference between the cost of gluten free alternatives vs. the cost of gluten-containing foods. For example, if you purchase gluten free bread for $6.50 and non-gluten free bread cost $2.50, you’ll only be able to claim the difference: $4.00. I recommend using a spreadsheet for this and just filling it on as you go.

The Celiac Disease Foundation provides more detailed information on this issue, you can read their overview and recommendations here.


    • Pauline says:

      What many don’t realize is that quite often, someone allergic to gluten also has other allergies, in particular nuts which makes it difficult when so many gluten-free recipes call for almond flour. I for one not only have an allergy to nuts but also potato flour/starch which renders substituting more difficult.

      I welcome all help.

    • Dixie says:

      I also make my own. I keep mixes for things in containers so I can make as little or as much as I want. Waiting right now for tonight’s hamburger bun to get out of the oven. Yum. I will bring my rolls to restaurants. Some will make a burger with it or patty melt, and some will serve me a bun less burger and I put it on my bun myself.

    • msmodify says:

      We can’t deduct items like produce or meat, however, products like xanthan gum and sorghum flour are completely tax-deductible as they have no “regular” counterpart but are purchased to meet dietary needs.

  1. Bekca says:

    How does this work if it is your child with Celiacs? Is it still additional cost exceeding my husband and my combined adjusted gross income by 7.5%?

    • Angus says:

      If your child lives with you and you support your child, then yes, you can claim the food on taxes. Especially since cross contamination is a real issue. I’m GF due to celiac, so my husband only eats what I eat. We don’t take chances on cross contamination by bringing conventional food into our kitchen.

  2. Kristen McCormick says:

    What if you have to buy grass fed/free range/organic meat, eggs and cheese? I cannot eat meat, eggs or cheese from grain fed animals? Is that deductible?

    • msmodify says:

      Great question! I’m curious to know as well. I assume if you can show proof of a celiac diagnosis that should be sufficient, but don’t take my word on that!

  3. JustTina says:

    This is great info! I know there are a lot of recipes out there for GF but the ingredients are still costly and they often require another ingredient or byproduct that I am allergic to – coconut. Besides, I don’t have the time to bake. Thanks for the tip!

  4. Amanda says:

    Great post I stumbled upon … definitely consult with your tax advisor. This information gets you think but it’s not 100% accure.

  5. Juliet Anna says:

    Very glad I came across this! I have deal with Celiac Disease all my life and honestly many of times not chosen gluten free groceries because at times I haven’t been able to afford it. This is something I am definitely going to look into!

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